Due to an increased traffic of large cargo ships with an unloading restriction of 2.5 m, the river Weser has been expanded from Minden to Bremen. This resulted in the expansion project at the lock forebays in Langwedel. As a protecting fender system for the lock was required, Johann Bunte Bauunternehmung GmbH & Co. KG entrusted ShibataFenderTeam with the design and supply of a suitable fender solution. The existing approach pier of the lower and upper forebay had been dismantled and replaced by single steel piles equipped with SFT Donut Fender Systems. The fenders are located at the lock entrance to ensure safe guiding into the lock which is mainly used for inland traffic. In total, the delivery included 16 pieces of Donut Fenders with an outer diameter of 2,250 mm and a flat length of 4,410 mm (Pile: 1,220 mm). With a contact area of 3,660 mm, the fender system offers large cargo vessels a large contact area. The new approach pier will have a length of approximately 30 meters on both sides.
In February 2019, our German office received the order and about 6 months later, in August, the first partial delivery of 10 pieces arrived at the job site. The second partial delivery of 6 Donut Fenders was ordered for June 2020. The successful installation now allows the accommodation of large cargo ships in Langwedel, Germany.
The installation of Donut Fenders in front of locks is very useful, as they floating vertically with changing water levels. We see that Donut Fenders are increasingly being used as an approach pier for lock entrances, especially in Germany, instead of a classic approach pier made from steel, which is much more complex in terms of maintenance and assembly. The easy installation of Donut Fender Systems is one more argument for many clients to decide on this fender type.
A long-lasting business relationship between Johann Bunte and SFT offers a great base to create new infrastructure together for a secure and sustainable environment. Supporting this expansion project in Germany was a great pleasure for SFT.